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Senate panel invites Comey, former officials to briefing in Russia probe

Senate panel invites Comey, former officials to briefing in Russia probe
© Greg Nash

The Senate Intelligence Committee is expressing an interest in hearing from former FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyComey donates maximum amount to Democratic challenger in Virginia House race FBI investigated media leak of McCabe comment about Flynn and Trump House Judiciary chairman threatens to subpoena Rosenstein MORE again as part of its investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The committee announced in a notice issued Friday afternoon that it has invited Comey and three other former top intelligence officials to a closed-door hearing next week.

It is unclear whether Comey plans to attend the hearing, though former Director of National Intelligence James ClapperJames Robert ClapperWrong for Democrats to call for more Kavanaugh investigations The Hill's Morning Report — Where the Kavanaugh nomination stands Hillicon Valley: 50M affected by Facebook hack | Google CEO to testify on Capitol Hill | Tesla shares slump after SEC sues | House Intel votes to release Russia probe transcripts | Dem holds up passage of key intel bill MORE, former CIA Director John BrennanJohn Owen BrennanBrennan: Saudi denials of involvement in Khashoggi's disappearance 'ring hollow' Clinton's security clearance withdrawn at her request Mr. President, tear down the wall hiding those FISA abuses MORE and former National Security Agency (NSA) Director Mike RogersMichael (Mike) Dennis RogersTrump's praise for North Korea complicates cyber deterrence Overnight Defense: Trump approves new counterterrorism strategy | Mattis calls Russian arms treaty violations 'untenable' | Trump may fire Air Force chief over Space Force, report says Trump considering firing Air Force secretary over 'Space Force' position: report MORE are all expected to attend.

The hearing, which is expected take place Wednesday morning, will delve into the intelligence community’s work compiling the 2017 assessment cataloging Russian interference in the election, according to the committee.

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Trump fired Comey last May, a move the president has indicated was at least partly motivated by the ongoing federal probe into Russia's election meddling. That investigation, which Comey led before his ouster, is now being spearheaded by special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE.

It has been nearly a year since Comey’s bombshell testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee during which he recounted his version of the circumstances leading up to his firing.

Comey told the committee in June that the president directed him to end the investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who has since pleaded guilty to lying to FBI agents and is cooperating in Mueller’s probe.

Trump has disputed Comey’s account.

More recently, Comey has attracted huge media attention for the release of his memoir that also focuses on his firing, sparking renewed criticism from the president and his allies.

The Senate panel has been investigating Russian interference since early 2017. Chairman Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrDems can use subpoena power to reclaim the mantle of populism Collusion judgment looms for key Senate panel The National Trails System is celebrating 50 years today — but what about the next 50 years? MORE (R-N.C.) told reporters this week the committee plans to wrap up its investigation in August.

On Tuesday, the committee released the first portion of its unclassified report, detailing Moscow’s “unprecedented, coordinated cyber campaign” against digital U.S. voting infrastructure in the states leading up to the election.